January 2, 2013
January 7, 2013

For Thursday’s workout, we looked to even out our bodies strength by hitting a grinder workout full of unilateral exercises.

Partner Warm-Up: 
3 x Shuttle Jog and Jumping Jacks; 
50′ Squat Walk; 
10 Hip-to-Wall and 10 OH Band Pull-Aparts; 
10 Hip-to-Wall and 10 Band Pull-Aparts; 
10 Hip-to-Wall and 10 Alt-T Push-Ups Partner 
Partner Met-Con: 
2,4->10 Ladder of 1-Arm KB Thrusters; 
15 Windshield Wipers; 
10,8->2 Ladder of 1-Arm KB Front Squats; 
15 Push-Ups; 
10,8->2 Ladder of 1-Arm KB Swings; and,
30 Sit-Ups

Each pair grabbed a single KB to use between them, and all KB exercises (Thrusters, Front Squats, and Swings) were done alternating between partners while the body weight exercises were done together. For example, P1 would do 2 thrusters with the right arm, then 2 with the left, and then P2 would do 2 with the right and 2 with the left. P1 then starts on 4 per arm, and so on until both partners had finished 10 per arm. The partners would then hit the floor to complete 15 windshield wipers each (done at the same time, and with 1WW = over and back).

From there, it was on to another ladder, descending this time, of 1-Arm KB front squats, followed by a quick round of push-ups. To cap it all off, the partners completed one more descending ladder of 1-Arm KB swings and 30 sit-ups.

A few weeks ago we worked through a couple of ladders with the kettlebells where the weight, not the reps, changed (“COME WHAT MAYAN“). However, one thing that we discussed then and covered again Thursday night, was proper rotation of the arms during single arm KB swings (which, honestly, is a great cue to keep in mind during regular swings as well). Slight internal rotation of the arms during the swing, so that the palm faces out and thumb rearwards, is fine (“thumb to bum” as it’s been called, and many thanks to Alex for the reminder of that cue!):

This helps maintain control over the weight and really helps the lifter to tap into the snap of the hips to swing the KB, as opposed to lifting it with the shoulders. Most importantly, though, it also keeps our elbows safe and in one piece – any external rotation of the arm, where the palms face in and thumb forwards, means our elbows are prime for hyper-extension as they swing back through our legs and our arm connects with the thighs. This is not a good thing, but since everyone was paying close attention during our pre-workout movement discussion, there was no such awfulness to be seen during the workout.  Success.

Before anyone was let go, class worked through a quick set of cool down stretches, including the “assume-the-position” stretch on the wall, forearms and wrists, and then hips and low back with some paused scorpions. Of course, the best part about last night was Tom’s hint about an order that finally – FINALLY – is coming to fruition:

Anyone remember what these are? Get ready for a reminder – can’t promise they’ll be here by this weekend, but we’re trying! See you on Saturday.



  1. Andraea says:

    Great workout last night with KB! Definitely deceiving when first looked at. The left arm thruster with the KB was the worst for me. I felt uncordinated and it showed me that my left arm is quite weaker than the right arm. Got some good bruises going on my forearms at the moment. It was better when i start stabilizing it with both hands on the front squats. It helped keep my chest up.
    It was great to work with Steph as she has great form on squats. I form was suffering last night as I was feeling unbalanced.

    I’m out of town next week for work but I’ll be back the following week and looking forward to working with weights!

  2. Charles says:

    To Chris and Tom, thanks for leading this and all the other free classes, and everyone else for playing so well with others (hat tip to Dre and Alex).

    BTW, my current selection for the CrossFit Book Club (especially good for time on stationary bikes, stair climbers): “Chosen Soldier: The Making of a Special Forces Warrior” by Dick Couch. If that doesn’t impress, try Couch’s “The Warrior Elite: The Forging of SEAL Class 228.” Look up Hell Week.

    Go ‘Skins on Sunday!

  3. Steph says:

    As much as the stupid kb bruises me, I am glad we’ve had them for classes to incorporate some weights into workouts to make the transition back to barbells easier. So looking forward to working with barbells, but I know it might be a little frustrating at first with somewhat decreased strength.

    Last night’s workout kicked my ass, but it felt good. The thrusters were pretty heavy so I really had to use my lower body to generate momentum, which caused the kb to bounce a bit on my wrists. The rest of the movements were equally hard, but it was awesome to have Andraea as a partner cuz she just powers through them.

    Hope everyone’s enjoying the short week back at work. See you all tomorrow!

  4. Katie says:

    This was a fun one! I always like the little bit of rest with partner workouts, I feel like I can push through the rest more quickly.

    Sara and I partnered up despite our differences in strength. Major props to Sara for using the 20 kg!! She doubted her ability to do all the thrusters with it, but she powered through like a champ. Very impressive and instructive to watch how she knew when to rest and when to push through. I used 8 kg which felt fine, the sets of 8 and 10 thrusters were tough, but the rest wasn’t too bad. One-arm KB swings at this weight are active recovery for me, which is nice to have.

    That was a total of 30 thrusters, 30 front squats, and 30 KB swings on each side! I’m glad I didn’t do the math last night. My quads were shaky navigating Metro escalators last night, and I’m guessing I’ll be feeling it even more tomorrow.

  5. Sara says:

    I had the greatest partner anyone can ask for. We all know Katie is CDFC’s biggest cheerleader and I got to say she really helped me through the whole workout but especially the thrusters. Thank you Katie!!!!

    I think it was good I used the 20KG for the workout. Like Steph it forced me to use my hips more on the thrusters. Not driving through the finish and using leg strength to finish the thruster has always been something I have struggled with on thrusters. I think the heavy weight combined with the KB thruster was really good for forcing me to move the weight more efficiently. Once we got through the thrusters I knew I would be able to go unbroken on the other KB exercises.

    I am looking forward to using some barbells. YAY!!!